At Commencement on May 22, 2011, Amherst awarded honorary doctorates to seven people. The youngest is not even 30.

Top row, from left: Volcker, honorary marshals Joanne Schnell and Paul Schnell ’76, Koenig and Kendall. Bottom row, from left: Falk, Paster, Abele, Marx, Weeks and Waters.

John Abele ’59, doctor of humane letters. Retired co-founder and director of Boston Scientific Corp. Trustee emeritus of Amherst. Founder of the Argosy Foundation, which provides funding to such groups as Amherst’s Center for Community Engagement.

Adam Falk, doctor of science. Current president of Williams College and a high-energy physicist.

Andrew Kendall ’83, doctor of humane letters. Executive director and president of The Trustees of Reservations, which protects Massachusetts properties of scenic, historical and ecological value.

Gail Kern Paster, doctor of letters. Newly retired director of the Amherst-affiliated Folger Shakespeare Library.

Paul Volcker, doctor of laws. Helped to end the U.S. stagflation crisis while chairman of the Federal Reserve under Presidents Carter and Reagan. Chaired President Obama’s Economic Recovery Advisory Board.

Alice Waters, doctor of humane letters. Founder, owner and executive chef of the famed Chez Panisse in Berkeley, Calif. Activist for local, organic and sustainable food.

Kimmie Weeks ’05, doctor of humane letters. After surviving the First Liberian Civil War, helped to found Voice of the Future and the Children’s Disarmament Campaign in Liberia. Launched Youth Action International for women and children in postwar African nations. The youngest person ever to receive an Amherst honorary degree.

Arthur W. Koenig ’66, Medal for Eminent Service. Established the college’s Koenig Scholar­ship Fund, which supports recruitment and education of five high-achieving students each year from low-income families in Africa and Latin America.

Clark Ginapp (Holyoke High School, Holyoke, Colo.), Robert Hepner (Melvindale High School, Melvindale, Mich.) and Linda Linville (Centennial High School, Corona, Calif.), Swift Moore Teaching Awards, for secondary-school teachers nominated by members of the graduating class.

Photo by Samuel Masinter '04